CS325 Lecture Notes - Transcoding, Scientific Management

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8 Feb 2014
Foundations: Automation and Computation
1. Digital Media: Five Principles
2. A Short Social History of Computers
Manovich’s 5 principles of New Media
1. Numerical Representation
- Binary codes
- Digitization – converting or translating an image, sound, or text into
digits/binary codes
- Sampling – sample the analog image (drawing) and turn it digital
- Quantization – sampling pixel, becomes square – square is given a # to
represent colour i.e blue = 011011
- Metaphor of assembly line in 1900s, repetition of task
2. Modularity
- Identity
- I.e. Lego blocks – small modules used to create anything with the same
elements (elements on web are just a bunch of legos)
- All elements of webpage are modules/elements – broken down into distinct
3. Automation
- It is self governed, makes decisions on its own
- i.e. when your phone autocorrects you, when google finished your sentence
- May seem more efficient, however you are delegating the decision making of
your own writing, to a machine
- Not always there**
- Human intentionality can be removed from the creative process – i.e. correct
red eye on all photos
- Low level = autocorrect, high level = artificial intelligence
4. Variability
- Same image used over & over again using slight or radical modifications (i.e.
- Digital media are not fixed, they are constantly changing (variable)
- Manovich believes that websites generate content based on who you are
(hitmail.com results)
5. Transcoding
- Digital media influencing culture, culture influencing digital media
Social History of Computing
Theoretical claim by historian T. Hughes: ‘Social values are embedded in
“In popular accounts of technology, inventions of the late nineteenth century, such
as the incandescent light, the radio, the airplane, and the gasoline-drive
automobile, occupy center stage, but these inventions were embedded with
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